Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a cabinet meeting in Jerusalem on October 7, 2014
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a cabinet meeting in Jerusalem on October 7, 2014 © Dan Balilty - Pool/AFP
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a cabinet meeting in Jerusalem on October 7, 2014
AFP
Last updated: October 8, 2014

Netanyahu orders clampdown on Jerusalem unrest

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told police chiefs and the Shin Bet security service Tuesday to get tough on violent Palestinian protest in Jerusalem, which has spiked in recent months.

"The prime minister instructed that forces be strengthened in areas of conflict and that they should act aggressively against rioters," his office said after a special meeting of the security chiefs, also attended by Jerusalem's mayor and government legal advisors.

"He stressed that the current situation must not be allowed to become the norm," it said.

Since July's killing of a Palestinian teen by Jewish extremists and the start of a bloody Israeli military offensive in Gaza, Palestinians youths have been almost constantly on the streets throwing stones and petrol bombs at police, motorists and public transport.

Police said three officers were slightly injured Tuesday by stones and bottles hurled by Palestinians in mainly Arab east Jerusalem’s walled Old City.

Police say they have arrested more than 700 Palestinians in Israeli-annexed east Jerusalem since July, including at least 250 minors.

Rights groups allege many cases of police use of excessive force.

Police in the city are already out in numbers ahead of the week-long Jewish holiday of Sukkot, starting Wednesday evening, which swells the number of Jewish visitors to the Old City.

"Recently there have been stone-throwing incidents, public disturbances and violence," the statement quoted Netanyahu as telling Tuesday's meeting.

"We need to deal with this not only in light of the coming holidays but also in a fundamental way."

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